The intimate new Classic Stage Company production of Anton Chekhov’s Uncle Vanya, directed by Austin Pendleton and starring Dennis O’Hare, Peter Sarsgaard and Maggie Gyllenhaal, ends its extended Off-Broadway run March 8. The final weekend’s performances are sold out.
Theatregoers are flies on the wall of the Russian country home of CSC’s Uncle Vanya, which opened Feb. 12. With a set lit by what seems to be moonlight, candles and oil lamps, the new production allows the audience to sit in the shadows, eavesdropping on the sad and suffocating Chekhov characters who aren’t at home even when they’re at home. (The set is by Santo Loquasto, the lighting is by Jason Lyons.)
Fans of naturalism who felt too far away from the action — and the characters’ tactile intimacy — of Chekhov’s recent The Seagull on Broadway or The Cherry Orchard at Brooklyn Academy of Music might consider themselves in a kind of claustrophobic heaven in CSC’s 199-seat three-quarter thrust configuration.